SPACE RACE..WHAT’s it really like!
As an eight-year-old walking home from school, the anticipation of bursting through the front door to watch THE JETSONS cartoon on a Black & White TV was strong. A futuristic space age family with a DOG! 55 years on and that music still rings in my ears and most of those future gadgets are today Technology.
A few days ago, ELON MUSK went Live on Facebook to announce their Interplanetary SPACE X program with ZOZO Artistic tourists hitching a ride to Buzz the moon in 2022. I was spellbound. This is real. It is fun and exciting. It’s a test before heading to Mars or beyond! WOW! It is not just an idea it is on now! For 100 minutes I was glued to my seat. A classic ADVENTURE with dreams fueled by imagination and powered by passion, pushing through the everyday norm. Engineers ruled the day, but if it didn’t look cool and beautiful to ELON it didn’t cut it. Yes, his space ship had to look good too and it does! By the end ELON was my hero. I felt like an excited little school kid again! I am a dreamer and LOVE this stuff. It’s NOT a movie it’s inspiring Adventure at its best.
By the time 12 men had landed on the moon, only 11 solo circumnavigating sailors had made it around Cape Horn! Today only about 100 sailors have made it solo Non-stop around the Globe. Now we are headed to Mars!
During media Questions ELON told all involved it was a Risky mission. It was Dangerous and maybe they will not come back. He was then told BOEING had just announced that their JET ENGINE would be the first taking people to the moon and beyond. ELON lit up like an overpowered LED! Great! Bring it on! Competition is a good thing and Races are interesting. FLASH BACK 50 years!!
In 1968 nine sailors from different countries were about to set off on a risky mission. It was dangerous. No one knew if it was even possible, or if they would come back? Back then man had not set foot on the moon!
Today SPACE X and BOEING are racing away from the GLOBE and toward the moon. At the same time ten solo sailors deep in the Southern Ocean are racing toward Les Sables D’Olonne. They also volunteered to step back in time to 1968 as closely as possible. Think about that. Think about that tonight as you snuggle into clean sheets and a soft pillow to dream land. Think about that as your about to have a hot shower with waiting warm fluffy towel.
Our sailors are under pressure right now. They are facing a Southern Ocean challenge that will not go away for months. It is relentless, day after day, night after night, week after week. They cannot hide and they are in the way of constantly moving storms. They are at the bottom of the world, as alone as anyone can be and everything they do belongs to them. Yes they actually want to be there.
We are lucky voyeurs lost in the GGR tracker, their tweets, their weekly phone calls and opinions of others (including these) to imagine what it is like out there. But can we truly imagine what it’s like. I have been there before in 1990 and think I can. Yet I probably can’t. My boat was bigger with GPS and the BOC Challenge had stops. I know I think of them every night as I am trying to go to sleep and they wake me every morning. I am still trying to imagine what it is like for Susie, or UKU or Istvan and it goes on…I can see them and hear that wave charging down.
When I was listening to ELON’s presentation as any little kid would and honestly bursting with excitement imagining the world 50 years into the future, it sent me to 1968. YES back! I wondered how a 60-year old back then felt about nine solo sailors setting off into the unknown and around the world without stopping? Probably in AWE like me with SPACE X. They would be dead now. That is the one constant in our short lives and that is why some live theirs the way they do. GGR entrants grab life with enthusiasm as we all should.
The next 48 Hrs will see two amazing storms pass right over the GGR family. They know the’re coming. The’re as ready as they can be. They know these will not be the last and they know why they are there. These are NOT ordinary sailors. They are as brave and adventurous as any astronaut or sporting hero who has gone before.
I just received the following SATELLITE text messages as I am writing this.
ISTVAN… GOT KNOCKED DOWN – I AM OK PUMPEd OUT CABIN – RIG OK BUT NO WORKING PHONE or VHF ETC. – HOVE TO FOR THE TIME BEING-GOT FLOODED SSB and VHF GOT SHOT TOO PLS LET MY WIFE KNOW THAT I AM OK
I sent Text weather alerts to the fleet on the approaching storms. Shortly after UKU made an unscheduled safety phone call to confirm the latest position of the storm. An hour later, just now, he sent the following message.
IM SO LONELY HERE IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE.
This Golden Globe is like going to the moon! THAT’S WHAT IT’S REALLY LIKE.